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Covid-19

SA banks ready to assist distressed businesses amid Covid-19 pandemic

By: Sane Dhlamini     3rd June 2020 Global law firm DLA Piper, which has advised the Banking Association South Africa and South Africa’s biggest banks on the country’s loan guarantee scheme, has announced that the banks are ready to receive loan applications from businesses impacted by the coronavirus. The loan scheme, which was... 

CDH says Comp Act focusing on SMEs, but says that larger firms also struggling 

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd June 2020 The onslaught of the Covid-19 pandemic continues to complicate matters for various business, especially with the South African Competition Act now seemingly focusing on protecting smaller firms and customers who may be subject to price hikes during these difficult times. With the world finding... 

CDH says Comp Act focusing on SMEs, but says that larger firms also struggling
Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr's (CDH's) Andries le Grange and Jerome Brink gives viewers some insight into the Competition Act, as well as what Covid-19 tax relief measures firms can consider. Video: CDH. Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Pandemic underpins importance of purpose-driven leadership, shared value creation

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd June 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic presents an opportunity for business to restructure and to pursue purpose-driven leadership and strategies, which includes creating shared value for all stakeholders. This will not only help in weathering the current difficulties, but will also position companies well for a... 

World Bank says governments should prepare policies for a new world after virus 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd June 2020 Interventions to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic should be no less powerful, forceful and fast than the crisis itself, says World Bank group president David Malpass in the bank’s 'Global Economic Prospects' report. Some of the chapters of the report were released on June 2, with the full... 

World Bank says governments should prepare policies for a new world after virus

Creecy outlines activities allowed under the Covid-19 Lockdown Level 3

By: Yvonne Silaule     2nd June 2020 Hunting, self-drive visits to private or public game reserves and national parks, and recreational fishing are among the activities to be allowed under Level 3, Environment, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Barbara Creecy has announced.   

Air transport association welcomes world body’s safe air travel guidelines

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd June 2020 The International Air Transport Association (Iata) – the representative body for the global airline industry – has called on governments around the world to swiftly implement the guidelines developed by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO – a specialist agency of the United... 

Replacing world’s costliest 500 GW of coal with solar and wind would shave $23bn off system costs  

By: Terence Creamer     2nd June 2020 Replacing the costliest 500 GW of coal with solar photovoltaic and onshore wind would cut power system costs by up to $23-billion a year and reduce annual carbon dioxide emissions by around 1.8 gigatons, equivalent to 5% of total global CO2 emissions in 2019, a new report shows. The study also... 

Replacing world’s costliest 500 GW of coal with solar and wind would shave $23bn off system costs

Imperial says nine-month performance ‘unsatisfactory’ amid Covid-19 impact

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd June 2020 Africa- and Europe-focused logistics company Imperial Logistics says its performance in the nine months to March 31, was “unsatisfactory”, adding that the Covid-19 pandemic was continuing to severely impact on the company's operations in more than 32 countries. During a yearly investor day... 

SAAE urges water security investment to relieve post-Covid-19 economic stresses

By: Natasha Odendaal     2nd June 2020 The South African Academy of Engineering (SAAE) has urged government to focus on targeted water infrastructure investment post-Covid-19 to bolster jobs and the economy amid limited resources. In a letter written to President Cyril Ramaphosa, the association advised a focus on infrastructure... 

Bidvest warns of lower earnings amid Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     1st June 2020 Services, trading and distribution group, the Bidvest Group, expects its headline earnings a share and earnings a share for the financial year to June 30 to be more than 20% lower year-on-year, as a result of the impact of Covid-19 on some of its businesses. While trading profit has been... 

TIPS Tracker: The economy and the pandemic

1st June 2020 Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies' (TIPS's) 'Tracker: The economy and the pandemic' highlights important trends in the Covid-19 pandemic in South Africa and how they affect the economy. Trends in Covid-19 infections in the Western Cape continue to look qualitatively different from the rest... 

TIPS Tracker: The economy and the pandemic

Bowmans into Malawi, Zambia amid pandemic

By: Sane Dhlamini     1st June 2020 Law firm Bowmans has expanded its services to Malawi and Zambia despite the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic that is crippling the world economy. The announcement comes less than a year after it announced it was opening a new office in Mauritius and entering into an alliance with Assefa &... 

Bowmans into Malawi, Zambia amid pandemic

Grinaker-LTA predicts construction woes will pass, emerging sectors will shore up industry

By: Schalk Burger     1st June 2020 Although the construction industry is experiencing serious headwinds as a result of stagnant growth, low business confidence, a lack of investment and, most recently, the impact of Covid-19-related restrictions, construction multinational Grinaker-LTA says there will always be a need for the... 

Production capacity rises in May but to remain subdued until demand grows

By: Donna Slater     1st June 2020 Having plunged to an all-time low of 5.1 index points in April, financial services provider Absa’s Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI) survey rose sharply to 43.2 index points in May, propelled by many factories returning to production in May when South Africa went into Alert Level 4, the bank... 

Kganyago sees limit to central banks’ virus role

By: Bloomberg     1st June 2020 South African Reserve Bank Governor Lesetja Kganyago warned against unrealistic expectations about what central banks can do to soften the coronavirus’s impact and said they should remain focused on maintaining price and financial stability. Kganyago’s comments, made in an interview with... 

Gautrain extends operating hours

By: Donna Slater     1st June 2020 The Gautrain will, from June 1, expand its operating hours for the train service, in line with the easing of travel restrictions. Trains will operate daily, with the first trains departing from end stations at 05:30 and the last trains departing from these stations at 20:30. 

Gautrain extends operating hours

Outlook continues to deteriorate – Standard Bank

By: Martin Creamer     1st June 2020 The outlook for the 12 month period to the end of December continues to deteriorate, Standard Bank stated on Monday in a voluntary trading update and trading statement for the six month period ending June 30. Africa’s biggest lender by assets advised that earnings in the six months to June 30... 

Outlook continues to deteriorate – Standard Bank
Standard Bank Group building

ANC looks for new levers to boost South Africa’s economy 

By: Bloomberg     1st June 2020 The head of economic transformation in South Africa’s ruling party proposed a range of measures to bolster the economy, ranging from encouraging the use of pension funds and the central bank to finance infrastructure spending to the creation of a state bank and pharmaceutical company. Enoch... 

ANC looks for new levers to boost South Africa’s economy
Enoch Godongwana

Scientists advised Cabinet to go to Level 1, govt chose middle ground - Ramaphosa

By: News24Wire      1st June 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa has said that scientists who are advising government on the response to the coronavirus crisis recommended that South Africa could move to Level 1 of the nationwide lockdown, as it had become a "blunt tool" in curbing the spread of the pandemic in the country. But the... 

Scientists advised Cabinet to go to Level 1, govt chose middle ground - Ramaphosa

Pupils will now return to school on June 8, says basic education department

By: African News Agency      1st June 2020 Pupils will only return to school on June 8, the basic education department said on Sunday night. The Council of Education Ministers (CEM) met on Saturday to assess the state of readiness for reopening schools, the department said in a statement. 

Phased reopening of air travel to start with main airports under Covid-19 regulations and directives

By: African News Agency      1st June 2020 Commercial aircraft movement, subject to the coronavirus (Covid-19) level 3 lockdown regulations as of June 1, will start with OR Tambo International Airport, Cape Town International, King Shaka International, and Lanseria International in phase 1 of three phases, Transport Minister Fikile... 

PRASA not ready to resume commuter operations under Covid-19 level 3, says Mbalula

By: African News Agency      1st June 2020 While the Gautrain will resume its OR Tambo International Airport service when the coronavirus (Covid-19) level 3 regulations come into effect on June 1, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) is not yet ready to resume Metrorail commuter services, Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula... 

Minister urges mines to test without fear of mine closure 

By: Martin Creamer     29th May 2020 Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe on Friday urged mines to test for Covid-19 to the full extent without fearing mine closure. The Minister was responding to a media question on the steps the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) was taking to end the backlog of... 

Minister urges mines to test without fear of mine closure
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Gwede Mantashe

From field hospitals to ventilator prototypes, South Africa's state of readiness for Level 3 outlined 

By: Terence Creamer     29th May 2020 Cabinet’s economic cluster sought to offer assurances on Friday that significant preparations had been made to facilitate a safe transition to a Level 3 lockdown from June 1, which opens the way for the return to work of eight-million more people. The easing of the lockdown is expected to... 

From field hospitals to ventilator prototypes, South Africa's state of readiness for Level 3 outlined
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Labour and Employment Minister Thulas Nxesi

OR Tambo International Airport reports surge in air cargo operations

By: Rebecca Campbell     29th May 2020 State-owned Airports Company South Africa’s OR Tambo International Airport, east of Johannesburg, has reported that, over the period from March 26 to May 22, it handled 1 400 arriving and departing air cargo flights. This amounted to a 62% increase over the same period last year. For April – the... 

Jasco CEO steps down, company monitors Covid-19 impact

By: Natasha Odendaal     29th May 2020 JSE-listed Jasco Electronics CEO Mark Janse van Vuuren has resigned, effective May 31, after a restructure. Deputy chairperson alternate Pete da Silva will serve as interim CEO as the board evaluates potential successors. 

Coronavirus: Employees can refuse to return to work if they feel unsafe – labour minister

By: News24Wire      29th May 2020 Employees have a right to refuse to return to work next month if they have a "reasonable belief" their employers have not put in place required precautions against the spread of Covid-19 in the workplace, according to Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi. Nxesi was one of several ministers... 

 Coronavirus: Employees can refuse to return to work if they feel unsafe – labour minister
Photo by Creamer Media
Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi

Paediatric experts say kids are at low risk of contracting, spreading Covid-19

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th May 2020 Paediatric experts, who serve on an advisory subcommittee to the Department of Basic Education, on May 29 discussed the risks for schoolgoing children to contract and spread Covid-19. A virtual seminar hosted by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) provided evidence-based information about... 

Paediatric experts say kids are at low risk of contracting, spreading Covid-19

Futuristic thinking required for manufacturing sector in light of pandemic

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     29th May 2020 Amid the uncertainty created by Covid-19, manufacturing businesses should pursue futurist thinking to create strategies for their businesses to ensure they remain resilient, Futureworld business strategist Craig Wing said during the first of the Manufacturing Indaba’s ‘Preparing for a progressive... 

Department commends UIF's efforts

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     29th May 2020 The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) is continuing to make a difference to the lives of many people in South Africa, with timely cash injections, despite the pandemic continuing to impact on many lives, the Department of Employment and Labour (DEL) said in a statement on May 29. Since the... 

Leasehold Programme can contribute to smallholder agricultural development after lockdown

By: Schalk Burger     29th May 2020 The Leasehold Programme – a collaborative partnership between the Jobs Fund, communities and sugar miller Tongaat Hulett – is expected to be able to support agricultural development of smallholder farmers. The 2014 Sugarcane Development Initiative, which is a public-private partnership between... 

Covid-19 pall hangs over Nampak’s recovery prospects  

By: Terence Creamer     29th May 2020 Packaging group Nampak announced on Friday that impairments of R3-billion, which related to its Nigerian and Angolan operations, had contributed materially to a slump in its interim results for the period to March 31. The outlook for the business was also uncertain, with the Covid-19 pandemic... 

Covid-19 pall hangs over Nampak’s recovery prospects
Nampak CEO Erik Smuts in conversation with Engineering News editor Terence Creamer on the group's interim results and its future strategy and prospects. Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Different scenarios possible for country’s energy sector in face of pandemic

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     29th May 2020 With the uncertainty and ever-changing environment resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, it is difficult to predict what the impact will be on South Africa's energy sector; however, there are different scenarios that could play out and industry role-players will need to navigate these new energy... 

Cleaning and Disinfecting for the Prevention of Coronavirus spreading 

29th May 2020 Due to the fast-spreading nature of Corona Virus (COVID-19), the disinfecting of communal and public spaces has become a necessity across the globe. This is crucial in the pursuit of curbing this virus. Cleaning of surfaces followed by disinfection is the best practice for prevention of COVID-19... 

Cleaning and Disinfecting for the Prevention of Coronavirus spreading
Cleaning and Disinfecting for the Prevention of Coronavirus spreading

Protocol to ensure safety on construction sites

By: Donna Slater     29th May 2020 The Construction Management Foundation (CMF) welcomes President Cyril Ramaphosa’s reopening of all construction and infrastructure works under Alert Level 3 on the Risk Adjusted Strategy that will commence on June 1 as a positive step in helping to reinvigorate the construction sector. The... 

Ramaphosa tables support for 2yr debt standstill for African countries

By: Donna Slater     29th May 2020 Addressing members of the African Union (AU) on development financing for developing countries in the era of Covid-19, chairperson and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said Africa was encouraged by the collaboration of the Group of 20 economies, the Bretton Woods institutions and the... 

Enviro association calls for admin, practitioners to be allowed to resume work

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th May 2020 The Environmental Assessment Practitioners Association of South Africa (Eapasa) has called on government to allow environment-impact assessment (EIA) processes to continue, particularly for projects related to the provision of services and infrastructure with a public-interest focus. The... 

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